In 1995 Hornby described education as a process of training and instruction of children and young people in educational institutions which is designed to give knowledge and develop skills useful to the society. This process is centred by a number of planned activities which hold the potentials of imparting the skills significant to the society just as the definition points out. An outline or structure of these activities is what makes up an educational curriculum. Pillai (1984; p5) defines the curriculum as a comprehensive plan for an educational training programme or course to offer new or improved manpower to fulfil the rising needs of a dynamic society . Below is a discussion of some of the purposes of the curriculum to the society.
* The curriculum serves the function of a tool for societal development. The curriculum include important and knowledge to be imparted on the learners, this is to say that there is a supplement of ideas on the students despite their innate intelligence. These new ideas help in discoveries that may assist in the society’s growth for example, new ways of increasing agricultural productivity. A student at school may encounter an idea that may help in the increase of agricultural outputs and if he implements this new idea, the society to which he belongs, would develop economically. A point which Jacobs (1997, p23) agrees with by saying that “education is the realization of each person’s unique potentialities thus, education focuses on the social conditions that block the fullest realisation of individual potentialities as it emphasizes on the changes in the present system required to bring about a more humanistic society”. This is just to say that education allows learners to make important contributions to the societies to which they belong, on the other hand enhancing the development of their particular societies.
* The curriculum also works as a source of societal cohesion. Webster (2011, p365) described a society as an enduring and cooperating social group whose members have developed organized patterns of relationships through interaction with one another. This togetherness is partially achieved through the curriculum in that the curriculum holds distinctive aims and objectives and these are shared amongst all kinds of members of educational institutions across the nation. This is to say that there are similar goals set across the communities of the nation despite the societal differences. To achieve these goals and objectives the society members must share ideas and cooperate and this fosters cohesion as members of different communities are inclined to come together and formulate ways by which they can attain their shared goals. The curriculum serving the purpose of cohesion fostering element amongst members of the society.
* The curriculum holds the purpose of effective societal problem solving. Basing on one of the ideologies on which education is found, it can be easily said that education can be used for effective societal problem solving, whereby the curriculum happens to be an integral part of the education system. Adopting such an ideology thus education for problem solving, it means that the curriculum in this case must pertain to such an ideology. Whereby it has to include activities and experiences that will allow students attain effective methods of problem solving. In this case the curriculum being used as a tool for effective problem solving. If student undergo experiences of such a curriculum it means they will positively contribute to their particular societies in terms of problem solving. Hence the curriculum depicting the purpose of effective problem solving in the society. Brosnan (1999, p64) agrees by saying that “the individual is a unique personality who finds his greatest satisfaction in self-expression in response to the changing world”. Thus humans find it less of a burden when they speak...